MUMBAI , INDIA / POLITICS / APRIL 15th , 2013
By Sailesh Mishra
Indian Politics ‘Newest’ Vote Bank: Senior Citizens to Impact on 250 Loksabha Seats in coming Election
Taking a cue from recent study “Social Media & Lok Sabha Elections”, by IRIS Knowledge Foundation and supported by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), on how Facebook and other social media will impact 160 seats in coming Election, what immediately came to my mind was Elder Population impact on Indian Democracy. I have been trying to market this idea since launch of Silver Innings in April 2008.
As on 2012 Senior Citizens Population in India is 100 million (10 crore) that comes to roughly 10% of Total Population. But when we take into account the Total Voting Population i.e. 18+ age group, then Senior Citizens becomes roughly 26% of Voting Population, here I have not taken into account Senior’s influence on Family voting.
Indian Parliament has 543 constituencies / seats and this 26% strong Vote Bank of Senior Citizens will surely impact more then 250 constituencies. This ‘new’ Senior Citizens Vote bank always existed but no one including elders ever realised their strength . This time 2013/14 Parliamentary and State Election will be change in new thought process towards our elders , they deserved to be respected and cared for as our great tradition need to travel in this new speed changing society .
I would be happy if any research agency or students take up this interesting subject of ‘Senior Citizens Voting Impact on Indian Politics‘.
In recent times, since last 3 years there has been contestant activity by most of the political parties to woo Senior Citizens by organising onetime events, trips, goodies etc , but they have failed to make a concrete Long Term Policy & Programme for doubling Ageing population . Government , Politicians and Political parties are Ageing but they don’t bother about Ageing population , which many demographer describe as ‘ Silver Tsunami ‘ , which will have huge economic and social impact on India’s growth . Not to forget the same story will repeat in most of the developing countries.
Due to advocacy and awareness campaign like ‘ 16th August National Protest Day’ by organization’s like AISCCON, Silver Inning Foundation and a united front called Join Action Committee (JAC) since 16th August 2010 , of more than 32 All India organisation’s working for and with Senior Citizens and newly formed Pension Parisad ; there has been marked improvement in channelizing & mobilising Senior Citizens as united group demanding basic rights from central and state governments . Senior Citizens pan India, has been slowly realizing their strength and can’t be fooled any more by this goodies of politicians.
Social Media including Facebook and Twitter, has added new type of activism and in fact renewed the whole advocacy movement, Silver Innings a pioneer in social media usage for ageing and many youth and elders have taken this technology route for outreach and mobilising elders and their family.
Iam happy that , Elders like always will give shape to our Future , whatever they demand today will be for betterment of more then 85% of total population. This strengthen my firm view that ‘Our Elders Are Change maker’s ‘, the change we all want to see.
Sailesh Mishra is Founder President of 'Silver Innings' a socail enterprise and Silver Inning Foundation, a NGO working with Senior Citizens and has more then 6 years hard core activist experience in Ageing domain . His unique PR and ICT tool usage for Ageing has made him Internationally known Gerontology Consultant. He may be contacted at email@example.com
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